Sports medicine pertains to injuries that occur during sports or exercise. Some sports injuries result from accidents; others are due to poor training practices, improper equipment use, insufficient warmups, and stretches.
Common Types of Sports Injuries
Sprains and Strains
A sprain is a stretch or tear of a ligament. Symptoms of sprains include varying degrees of tenderness or pain, bruising, inflammation, swelling inability to move a limb or joint, or joint looseness, laxity, or instability.
Areas of the body most vulnerable to sprains are the ankles, knees, shoulder and wrists.
A strain is a twist, pull, or tear of a muscle or tendon. Injury may result from overstretching or over-contraction. Symptoms of strains include pain, muscle spasms, and loss of strength.
Knee injuries can result from a blow to or twist of the knee which can occur with improper landing after a jump or from running too hard, too much, or without a proper warmup.
Shin splints is a painful condition in the shins and are primarily seen in runners, swimmers, dancers or athletes involved in high impact activity. Shin splints are caused by overuse or incorrect use of the lower leg, including improper stretching, warmup, or exercise techniques, overtraining, running or jumping on hard surfaces, and running in shoes that don't have enough support. These injuries are often associated with flat (over-pronated) feet.
Achilles Tendon Injuries
These injuries involve a stretch, tear, or irritation to the tendon connecting the calf muscle to the back of the heel.
The most common cause of Achilles tendon tears is tendinitis, a degenerative condition caused by aging or overuse. When a tendon is weakened, trauma can cause it to rupture.
Acute fractures: Acute fractures are either simple (a clean break with little damage to the surrounding tissue) or compound (a break in which the bone pierces the skin with little damage to the surrounding tissue). Most acute fractures are considered emergencies. If the fracture breaks the skin, this especially dangerous because there is a high risk of infection. These wounds will have to be cleaned thoroughly to prevent infection.
Stress fractures: Stress fractures occur largely in the feet and legs and are common in sports that require repetitive impact, primarily running/jumping sports such as gymnastics or track and field. Running creates forces two to three times a person's body weight on the lower limbs.
A dislocation occurs when the two bones forming a joint become separated. High-impact sports such as football and basketball or sports that result in excessive stretching or falling cause the majority of dislocations. A dislocated joint is an emergency situation that requires immediate medical attention.
Dr. Nguyen will develop a treatment plan tailored to each individual patient's needs, so they can achieve the highest possible level of function. In addition to the comprehensive examination, a patient will be x-rayed, and, in some cases, an MRI or CT SCAN will be used. Depending on your specific needs, we also offer reconstructive surgery, suggest different strengthening exercises, or refer you to a physical therapist.